The streets are back for real this time. Streets of Rage 4 is set for April 30, 2020 on PC, PS4, Xbox One, and Switch, and today one more mode was confirmed for the beat 'em up revival: Battle Mode.
First announced in 2018, Streets of Rage 4 is a brand-new brawler built from the collaboration of Lizardcube, Guard Crush Games, Dotemu, and Sega. Today's announcement confirms another returning feature, Battle Mode, will be coming when Streets of Rage 4 launches on April 30, letting up to four local or two online players to fight it out in teams or free-for-all.
Last week, early eShop listings prompted Dotemu to respond to a supposedly leaked release date of April 23. On the same day, the developers released a new trailer highlighting the throwback pixel fighters joining the roster; over on the PlayStation blog, DotEmu Executive Producer Cyrille Imbert discussed some of the work that went into reviving some of the original Streets of Rage roster.
"First, our team had to rip each and every character, one by one, frame by frame," said Imbert. "This was an exhausting process because we were dealing with around 1,500 different frames."
The devs then had to reconstruct animations by hand due to how intricate the process was, and then adapt everything to the fighting system built for Streets of Rage 4. It's a lot of work, but if the returning fighters are as engaging to play as previous demos have been, it was probably worth it.